tv ABC World News With Diane Sawyer ABC February 10, 2011 5:30pm-6:00pm PST
they're hoping to augment it a little bit. >> and that is going tonight on "world news," the crisis in egypt. drama and delay. a thunderous roar of anger in cairo. president mubarak said he'll give up some powers, but he's not going. and did our embattled ally take a swipe at the white house? under your yard. another neighborhood rocked by a deadly natural gas explosion. wasting your money. jon karl, our sherlock holmes of waste in washington, challenges the man at the top about what he found. and, end in sight. what does our sam champion see in the cold and the snow? good evening.
listen again for yourself to that moment today when egyptian president hosni mubarak announced to egypt and the protesters he is not going away any time soon. those were cries of anger after 17 days in the streets. though, mubarak did say he would turn over some of his powers to the new vice president. and at the same time, warned foreign countries to stop the pressure. so, what does this mean for america and the world tonight? our team is covering it all. and we begin with terry moran who is right there at the square in cairo. terry? >> reporter: diane, tonight, this square behind me is still filled with tens of thousands of protesters and you can sense their anger and frustration all the way up here. this entire country today was taken on a wild ride of careening emotions and almost unbearably intense political
drama. among the vast crowd in tahrir square tonight, the reaction to president mubarak's speech was instantaneous and furious. even as he was still speaking, the crowd took up the one-word fundamental demand of their revolt, "er hal, er hal." "leave, leave." but mubarak made clear one thing, he's not going anywhere anytime soon. "i will be responsible for changing the constitution," he said in a televised speech to the nation. he added he would stay in office until september, "to assure stability and a smooth transfer of power." that and mubarak's announcement that he was delegating some of his presidential powers to his hand-picked vice president omar suleiman. it all came as a crushing disappointment to the protesters. then, vice president suleiman took to the airwaves to try to reassure the country that change was really under way.
"let's work on this together," he said. adding, "people of egypt, go back to your homes." that's not likely. in tahrir square, they were no longer listening. many were marching, some headed for the presidential palace. some for egyptian tv. these were the latest chaotic moments in a wild day in cairo. earlier, an amazing moment that seemed for a time today to mark the triumph of the revolution. general hassan al roueini, one of the country's highest-ranking officers, made his way to a platform and spoke to the crowd. "tonight," he told them, "all your demands will be met. everything you have said will come true." as he left the square, i managed to ask him directly if the revolution had succeeded. "it is over," he told me. and for the rest of the day, and through the night until mubarak spoke, there was ecstasy in that square.
>> we are born again in egypt. >> reporter: born again? >> yes. >> reporter: cairo tonight is delirious. people get the news that the army has made its move and they're ecstatic. this is a democratic ecstasy here. it's thrilling. even wael ghonim, the 30-year-old google executive whose online organization of the protests and his ten-day detention made him a national leader, even he thought they'd won. >> it's the dream come true. the dream became true and you know, whatever we have been fighting for since the 25th of january is now being realized. >> reporter: mubarak seems to have dashed that dream, for now. and it all leads egypt in confusion and chaos and danger. and tomorrow, friday, the muslim day of prayer, another gigantic demonstration is scheduled. they're calling it, diane, a day of martyrs. >> terry, thank you. i want to go down into this night of turmoil, because we have word, jim sciutto is there among the protesters.
right not he's on the telephone. so, jim, tell us what's all around you at this moment. >> reporter: well, diane, the square is still alive with people. from the very moment those words left president mubarak's mouth, they were immediately vowing to continue the protests, vowing not to leave this square. and you can see them now, they are drinking tea, preparing for another night sleeping out here. and a long fight. in fact, they are already making plans for a large protest and march tomorrow. but earlier in the day, just the contrast was dramatic. the high hopes falling down to earth, almost with an audible thud. the crowd was expecting nothing less than a new egypt to begin with the president's speech. but they were disappointed. it was first confusion, as they, like all of us, tried to interpret what the president was saying, then disappointment and then some anger. one woman told me it practically gave her a heart attack not to hear him finally go. and then a group of young men surrounded me, chanting, asking me while america wasn't forcing him out.
such a contrast to earlier, where really there wasn't a sad face in the crowd, despite there not being an inof of space to spare. the crowd filled with people, it was a very calm day, and that changed the moment the president didn't give them what they wanted. >> well, jim sciutto, thank you. and i know you'll be phoning in throughout the night as you stay with the protesters there. and our christiane amanpour is here now. she led the coverage from cairo and is back now. we watched this together today. what are your sources saying is going to happen next? >> reporter: well, this is clearly a conversation now that is going on between the president and the people. he directly addressed the people in tahrir square. they directly roared back to him. i'm being told that he's given away most of his powers to the vice president and that he'll stay to shepherd through the constitution. the key is, will the army intervene? i'm told no, they will never intervene. will he stay? that's what he wants to do. and not be run out. they want to end this with dignity. plus, they know they don't have the time right now to have a credible election if it was held
right now. >> so, giving away some of his powers is not having an effect if he is still there. what are you hearing about the rest of the region and the tremors that were sent out today? >> reporter: you can imagine, no one is looking at this more closely than israel. right there in the middle of this. and israeli government has not spoken out until today. i just spoke to ehud barak, the defense minister, and he started out by telling me, egypt is not iran. >> the whole of the rest of the world is to tell them honestly, but behind closed doors and secure lines, we are ready to be there beside you, if you move concretely and coherently toward change. we respect your need to avoid falling into the hands of extremists. we understand that you need some time. the real winners of any short-term election, let's say it's in 90 days, will be the muslim brotherhood.
>> reporter: so, he's saying, that, again, time has to be given for them to be able to mount a credible reform and democratic process. he says that for israel, democracy coming to that part of the region can only be good. >> israel saying, give them time to get it credible. okay, thank you, christiane. and we both thought today, watching president obama, that he seemed to be expecting big news from president mubarak this morning. so, was this the news he expected? was he surprised? and what about mubarak's insistence that pressure from foreign powers is not going to move him? let's get the white house tonight reaction tonight from jake tapper. what about all of this? >> reporter: good evening, diane. i have to say, the chaos and confusion that so permeated throughout egypt made its way to the white house today. you're right, president obama seemed jubilant when he made remarks earlier today, talking about how we were witnessing history. although he did not want to get ahead of what president mubarak was going to announce.
and later came the news that president mubarak was not taking president obama's advice and including opposition leaders and and he was not taking over concrete measures, lifting the emergency law immediately, as president obama has asked him to do. so, i have to say, though the white house right now is poring over mubarak and vice president suleiman's statements, trying to figure out what went on tonight, there is no concrete reaction. they are still trying to make sense of it, just like the crowd in tahrir square. >> it is telling, jake. our thanks to you. and we want everyone to know we will be reporting on "nightline" later tonight with a wrap-up of today's events. but we'll move on next to another natural gas explosion in another quiet neighborhood in america. one so forceful it leveled houses and the latest disaster in allentown, pennsylvania, follows a terrible explosion in san bruno, california, you may remember, and another one in philadelphia. so, we asked david kerley, what
this is saying about aging pipes, natural gas and danger for everyone at home? >> reporter: just before bedtime in this former steel town, a massive explosion and a gas-fed inferno. >> i was reading a book in the living room and it felt like the tsh -- a giant kicked the house. like, it all shook. >> reporter: daylight this morning reveals what looks like a war zone. the house where the natural gas exploded, nothing more than a crater. it was the home of william and beatrice hall, a couple in their 70s. they were killed. and next door, a 4-month-old boy, a 16-year-old and one of their parents also killed. mayor ed pawlowski took us to the scene. this is the house that actually started in. it's gone. >> yes, it's gone. >> reporter: this is just the latest explosion. three weeks ago in philadelphia, this blast killed one. and last year in california, eight were killed. last year, there was a spike in the number of deaths involving pipeline explosions.
and watchdog groups don't believe the federal government is doing enough to safeguard us from these aging pipelines. there are nearly 2.5 million miles of pipes delivering natural gas to our homes. >> are we inspecting enough? no. are we putting the money into this, giving the attention? the answer is no. >> reporter: in that california explosion? it turns out there were problems with the pipe, the welds, according to experts, were flawed. on tuesday, the day before the explosion here in allentown, the utility inspected the area and no leak was detected. it was a cast iron pipe installed in 1928 which fed this explosion. a lot of our old cities face the same problems you do. >> they do. and it's a huge problem. and it's one that, right now, seems unsolvable. they're going to have lines that are going to break, rupture, and unfortunately lead to disasters like this. >> reporter: and many wonder if enough is being done to prevent these disasters. david kerley, abc news, allentown, pennsylvania. and still ahead on "world news," is sam champion really
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that powerful blizzard, it was roaring from the rockies into the deep south, piling on a mess for millions of us. in northern oklahoma, listen to this. the temperature plunged to 31 below zero. below zero. an all-time low for the state. but sam champion sent us word today that this winter of our discontent may be about to wind to close. >> reporter: the winter to remember we'd all like to forget. in just two months, eight powerful storms, toppling the metrodome. spoiling christmas. blizzard conditions that came with thunder snow and lightning. burying chicago, trapping drivers for hours. even snow in the south. georgia. texas. arkansas. >> this winter is probably the most brutal winter i remember in a long time. >> reporter: what happened? as we showed you weeks ago on "world news," this winter's jet stream was blocked, creating kind of a bulge across the u.s.,
allowing arctic air to flow south. every wet storm became a snowstorm. now, the block is weakened and that lets milder air flow across the country, shoving arctic air back to its normal place. with welcome relief. >> winter is not quite over yet but the pattern we're looking at for the next couple of weeks may be the beginning of the end of winter. >> reporter: so, while winter may not be over, for many communities around the country, this much-needed thaw will allow us to dig out and get out. for the first time since december. now, of course, there will be march and april snowstorms that deliver snow and ice, diane, but we're really excited about this. let me show you the numbers. just a week from today, oklahoma city at 77, dallas at 80 degrees. atlanta, 77. look even into new york and boston. those numbers, new york at near 60 degrees just a week from now. and if you go back to what you said about that amazing 31 degrees below, the coldest temperature ever in the state of oklahoma. if they get to the 70s, if you
count up, that's about a 100-degree difference from this week to next week. >> 100 -- isn't that weird? >> reporter: 100 degrees in a week. it's bizarre. >> we're talking about short shorts and snow boots. you don't know which when you wake up in the morning. sam champion, great to see you, at night, too. and coming up, our sherlock holmes on the trail of the government wasting your tax dollars. remember when you had " more energy for 18 holes with your buddies. more passion for the one ya love. more fun with your family and riends. it could be ! a treatable condition called low testosterone or lw t. come on, stop living in the shadows. you've got a life to live. [ male announcer ] so don't blame it on aging. talk to your doctor and go to isitlowt.com to find out more. whoa! that achy cold needs alka-seltzer plus! it rushes multiple cold fighters,
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karl really is a sherlock holmes of waste in washington. squandering of taxpayer dollars. and with all the talk now about washington cutting key programs, even education, he decided to ask, why don't they start with the waste you can see? >> reporter: now this is waste. today, a congressional committee held a hearing in the middle of a cold, cavernous government building that has been vacant for more than a decade. >> we have passed laws, several laws. we have passed specific laws to do this and we are sitting here in an empty, vacant building. >> reporter: the government loses more than $6.5 million every year on this building, yet it's some of the most valuable real estate in all of washington. we are on pennsylvania avenue, just four blocks from the white house. so now, republicans are saying they want to slice $1.7 billion out of the government's building budget. and they're promising other cuts. ending president obama's high speed rail program, gutting the environmental protection agency
and even cutting $74 million from the fbi's budget. >> we're broke. let's be honest with ourselves. >> reporter: but so far, republicans are leaving some real expensive sacred cows untouched. there's more than $25 billion every year spent on ethanol subsidies that neither help the environment nor save energy. $6.2 billion in tax credits for oil and gas companies flush with record profits. and $3.5 billion for an extra engine for the f-35 fighter jet the pentagon doesn't want. part of the engine is made in republican leader eric cantor's district, another, near john boehner's. why is there nothing in here about cutting funding for the extra engine for the f-35, for example. i mean, isn't this a no brainer? the pentagon says they don't want it. >> i am sure we are going to see this bill soon and all the details that come with it. >> reporter: another no brainer, ethanol subsidies. $6 billion a year, not even talked about. and many of the stuff --
>> some of the things that you are mentioning are not in the discretionary spending pot. >> reporter: but shouldn't it be considered for cuts? >> remind you that we have been in the majority now five weeks. >> reporter: if you add up just those three examples that i mention, the ethanol subsidies, the oil and gas tax credits, the extra engine, it ends up about $35 billion in savings over the next five years. and that's just three programs, diane. what they have in common is they are not on any of the republican lists of cuts and they all have strong supporters in congress. >> okay, jon. hang in there and keep it coming. thanks to jon karl, reporting tonight on waste in washington. and coming up next, a piece of rock and roll history gets a 21st century twist. ♪ [ screams ] [ people screaming ] [ tires screech ] ♪ [ tires screech ] ♪ [ man screams ]
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and jeffrey kofman lets us go along. >> reporter: big ben, buckingham palace, they're on the must-see list for tourists visiting london. and so, it would seem, is a crosswalk. like pilgrims, they come to see it from far and wide. where are you from? >> argentina. >> japan. >> i am from japan. >> from poland. >> australia. >> venezuela. >> reporter: there are literally thousands of crosswalks like this in london. here, they're called zebra crossings. actually, they say "zeh-bra." so, what makes this crossing such a big draw for tourists? well, maybe now you're starting to get the picture. ♪ come together >> reporter: ah, that picture. one of the famous album covers of all time. featuring those beatles classics "here comes the sun" and "come together." >> it's abbey road. >> reporter: abbey road. >> yeah. >> this is the abbey road where the beatles crossed the street. >> reporter: the never ending
parade of wannabe beatles can even be monitored from home on the abbey road webcam. just watch for the cluster with the swinging gait, plant foot firmly forward and pause. >> good, he got it. >> i'm just a beatles fan. always have been. lifetime dream to come here and i've seen it today. >> reporter: that is abbey road studio, just behind. where the beatles recorded their final album. out front, one of the few places in london where graffiti is legal. abbey road is, though, a busy road. one that london cabbies like jason have come to dread. >> this girl, what's she doing? >> she's trying to recreate the beatles album cover. >> reporter: and how often do you see that? >> oh, every time you cross it. every time. >> reporter: these four teenagers have come together from mexico to live a little history. >> we rehearsed and everything. >> reporter: so, when you woke up this morning, you put on white clothes so you could be john lennon. >> so i could be john lennon. yes. >> i could be george.
>> paul. >> ringo starr. >> yeah! >> reporter: which answers the enduring question -- why did the tourist cross the road? to get a picture. jeffrey kofman, abc news, on abbey road in london. >> love those beatles. have a great night, everyone. great to have you with us. see you tomorrow. w hundreds of new jobs on the way to the bay area. how the peninsula is becoming a popular corridor for good, green employment. >> and your next trip to dmv could be more expensive.
and it could be a raise in car tax. >> who is working at google? the minority hiring complaints facing some of the most-prominent businesses. >> good evening, another business in solar technology is move together bay area. >> sun edison develops solar power plants and is moving from maryland to the peninsula. wrong piece of tape there. we'll keep moving on, not far from oracle's headquarters. hey, dan. well while sun edison is saying there are things they need to hammer out, the city of belmont, officials here say it's practically a done deal with jobs coming to this area. this will be sun-edison's new home in belmont, california.